THE ASSOCIATED PRESS
Published: July 16, 2008
Filed at 2:40 a.m. ET
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia (AP) — Police arrested Malaysian opposition leader Anwar Ibrahim on Wednesday about an hour before a deadline for him to appear at police headquarters to answer allegations that he sodomized a male aide.
The arrest was likely to exacerbate the political divisions and tensions that have been running high since the opposition made unprecedented gains in the March general elections, eroding the ruling coalition’s strength in Parliament.
Anwar has denied the sodomy accusation — made in a police complaint by the young male aide last month — as a political conspiracy by the government to snuff out his publicly announced campaign to seize power by September.
About a dozen policemen, some of them wearing balaclavas, cordoned off the road leading to Anwar’s house and stopped his car, said his lawyer Sankara Nair. He said the policemen informed Anwar that they had orders to arrest him but gave no reason.
Anwar was bundled into a police car with dark tinted windows and driven to the police headquarters where a crowd of opposition lawmakers including his wife Azizah Ismail gathered outside. They were not allowed inside, and there was no trouble or violence.
Azizah said Anwar called on her cell phone after being arrested.
”I feel apprehensive because my husband … is not that well. He has a bad back, he’s had surgery. And (during our) the brief conversation he said they (police) were not gentle,” she said.
It was not clear why Anwar was arrested a little before 1 p.m. since he had said he would present himself for interrogation before the Wednesday 2 p.m. deadline set by the police.
Azmin Ali, the vice president of Anwar’s People’s Justice Party, called the arrest ”outrageous and very uncivilized.” ”This is not a criminal case but a political case,” he said.
The arrest was made as Anwar was returning home from the administrative capital of Putrajaya. He had told reporters there that he would go to the police headquarters at 2 p.m. and ”give my fullest cooperation” to the police. [more]
Anwar Ibrahim Was Threatened With Arrest Since Yesterday
The Latest Saga of Anwar Ibrahim
Video 1: Aide Alleges Sodomy
Video 2: Anwar Ibrahim Leaves Turkish Embassy
Video 3: Did Anwar Ibrahim Defy Order To Produce Himself
See video above where lawyer proves that Malaysian police is contradicting itself and breaking its own previous agreements with Anwar Ibrahim. Please remember this is the same Malaysian Police who beat up Anwar Ibrahim during this previous arrest in 1998 and he was held for six years until the Supreme Court overturned his conviction and found him innocent of exactly the same charges.